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Day celebrates many contributions of residents, fellows

Feb. 23, 2022, 2:09 PM


by Kathy Whitney

Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s 1,133 resident physicians and fellows are an integral part of the health care team, providing patient care throughout their training while also serving as indispensable resources for medical students and other team members.

Friday, Feb. 25, is Thank a Resident Day, an annual opportunity to celebrate these physicians in training. In 2018, the Gold Humanism Honor Society (GHHS) decided to bring to light the importance of the residency staff and encourage medical students at chapters throughout the nation to show their gratitude and appreciation. Thank a Resident Day has since expanded to hundreds of institutions around the country. VUMC will also honor its fellows simultaneously.

“Our residents and fellows have made a commitment not just to their future but to ours — working to provide excellent care to those in our clinics and hospitals daily but also preparing to care for the thousands of patients they will encounter after completing training,” said Kyla Terhune, MD, MBA, Vice President for Educational Affairs and associate dean for Graduate Medical Education. “As a whole, residents and fellows are compassionate, energetic, driven and innovative members of our Medical Center, and while not the only reason, they are a key reason that makes VUMC an academic medical center, an identity we all proudly

Chelsea Fechter, MD


Chelsea Fechter, MD, a fourth-year OB-GYN resident, a member of GHHS, and the recipient of the 2021 House Staff Clinical Teaching Award, refers to her colleagues as a family.

“I am so grateful to have been surrounded by a very diverse and driven group of 41 OB-GYN residents throughout my training. The word ‘grit’ is the best way to describe my co-residents, and every day we push each other to be our best clinicians, selves and resident family,” she said.

Residency training can last from three to seven years, with fellowship adding additional years, depending on a physician’s chosen specialty.

Carlos Lynes, MD

“It is challenging to see college buddies start their lives without the same work/time commitment compared to the expectations of a resident,” Fechter said. “However, when at work, I am surrounded by a resident family that makes time pass quicker with 80 hours a week of laughter and support.”

Carlos Lynes, MD, a third-year internal medicine resident and a member of the House Staff Advisory Council, said he chose VUMC for his residency because of the people and culture.

“VUMC is renowned for its research, tradition of excellence and training, but what set it apart, for me, was the relationships between residents and the faculty. The little things like a wall displaying our pets in the resident library or various group outings stood out to me. Examples like this made an impact beyond the generic talking points about collegiality,” Lynes said.

If you would like to express your appreciation for VUMC’s outstanding residents and fellows on Feb. 25, share your photos (masked please) on your social channel and tag @VanderbiltHealth or @vumcchildren on Instagram, and @VUMChealth or @VUMCchildren on Twitter.

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